Tenure in US schools is also known and referred to as life tenure or continuing contracts, defers to a senior academics’ right by law to retain their occupation and avoid termination without bare sagen.
Bare sagen is another word for ‘just cause’ ultimately protecting them from unfair and arbitrary termination. Tenure has been adopted within most universities, colleges and public schools in the United States.
Under the tenure in US system teachers and professors cannot be applicable for this status until showing a positive direction in their research, teaching and administrative powers. Some regulations allow these teachers to achieve this status in a shorter period of time if these terms are met. Academic contracts safeguard the rights of teachers and allows them to exercise academic freedom. These teachers are protected in cases where they disagree or dissent from the prevailing opinion of a school or college. If a teacher openly disagrees with these ideas or their superiors they are not legible to be terminated for this reason.
Disadvantages of the System
One very important disadvantage of the system is that teachers and professors protected under this act may abuse their academic freedom. Some teachers become unproductive and irrelevant. Their methods and lesson plans are at risk for properly and efficiently teaching children and students. Some abuse this process as they cannot be terminated. Many public schools risk employing teachers who do not show an effort after tenured to teaching students.
Why People are Angry
Some public schools are regarded as downtrodden establishments that produce lower class working children. These schools are controlled by the government and never close down regardless of how many children are pulled from the system yearly. Local governments give schools the upper hand against the education of the children. Taxes are used to fund these public entities and therefore keep them afloat, attending school for at least twelve years is compulsory, no matter how bad they get and how many teachers therein abuse the tenure in US laws. Because of academic freedom, school boards find it especially difficult to fire any teacher that exhibits incompetent and questionable behavior, regardless of how mediocre or harmful their teaching methods are.
Inability to Terminate Teachers
In Denver, Colorado teachers have been trying to keep tenure alive despite the lowering standards of education received by the children in the public school system in attempt to keep their jobs. Advocates of education reform believe that it is one of the major hindrances in improving education in the US because they are not able to terminate teachers that are incompetent. Despite rallies and opposition from one of the areas’ largest union of teachers, Colorado has changed their laws. This new legislature demands that each teacher has to be re-evaluated every year. Additionally, this re-evaluation will weigh heavily on the success rate and progression of students. Three years of continuous academic progression has to be shown before teachers are even considered for tenure.
Teachers whose students are slow in progressing for two straight years will not be offered or lose their tenure in US schools. The old system allowed teachers who have been in the system for three years of more to achieve tenure. This no longer happens in some states.
Across the rest of the United States, teachers that are disbanded are all but 2.1% and usually are fired because of bad conduct and not because of terrible performance.
What about Private Schools?
Regarding private schools, there are some that offer tenure and some that offer a yearly contract. Private schools do not work the same way as public schools do. They are not funded by tax dollars or stocked with children who are required by law to attend. Private schools remain functioning by the direct money from the parents of the students that enroll there. If a teacher does not perform justly then they risk having the student population dwindle resulting in a possible close down of the school.
Some private establishments do not offer tenure but instead offer each teacher a contract at the beginning of each school year if they choose to stay longer at that school. If a private facility finds that a teacher’s teaching has become incompetent they will not want to keep the teacher around at risk of having parents pull their kids and place them elsewhere. The school will make no money to survive hence tenure is not something they are willing to offer their staff.
What the Future Holds
The tenure in US system is usually allocated to public establishments but there are some private schools that offer this status or a contractual agreement between school and teacher.
Unfortunately, each state functions like a separate entity. While Denver has somewhat rectified their incompetent teacher problem the rest of the country has yet to solve or come to a compromise regarding the problem. Leaving many public schools producing children with low averages and unrealistic educational skills.